VANDALS strike Pawhuska High School

Monday, September 10th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Pawhuska High School students and teachers faced an upsetting surprise when they arrived for classes Monday morning. Vandals broke into the school overnight, leaving thousands of dollars in damage behind.

News on Six reporter Glenda Silvey says Pawhuska High students passed through school doors that vandals shattered only hours before. Police say a group of four teenagers used trashcans to break through exterior doors and several windows, in a spree that began in the early morning hours. Pawhuska Police Chief, Kevin St Peter, "About two o'clock this morning, we started getting calls from the neighborhood, kids vandalizing trash cans."

School officials believe the suspects spent about two hours in the school, where threw thousands of library books off shelves, most now filled with shredded glass from broken windows. The vandals trashed trophy cases, scattering and breaking at least 30 awards with special significance. They also broke into ten classrooms. School Superintendent Jack Miles, "They just kind of trashed them. They broke anything that was breakable, turned chairs upside down, knocked TV's and VCR's over, knocked them in the floor and broke them."

Principal Clint Culver says he knows of no motive for the destruction. "I just think you have some adolescents who made some bad choices and that you know weren't thinking clearly at the time and decided to act on some of the behavior, maybe some type of incident that maybe happened at home or school and they took it out on the school." Students say they were shocked that this happened at their school. Lindsey Conley, Student: "They're kind of mad and sad too, I think, because their classrooms are like torn up and everything." School officials continued to discover damage, but classes were back to normal by noon.

Culver praised staff and students for their cooperation in responding to an attack they all wish had never happened. Culver says there's no damage estimate available yet.

Police haven't filed any charges. He says if any Pawhuska students are charged in the vandalism, they will be suspended for the year.